Embolism from a Whiplash Injury May Cause Death
Hollywood and portrayal of the injured victim
Most diagnosed whiplash injuries result from rear-end car collisions. Hollywood often portrays the whiplash victim as the neurotic personality or the gold-digging opportunist who is represented by the fast-talking, amoral courthouse lawyer. And we all laugh at Hollywood’s depiction—yes, even attorneys have a sense of humor about their profession. But the truth is that some whiplash injuries may go undetected for a period of time after an impact and in the worst case scenario, may result in embolism or even death.
The reality of whiplash is not so funny
Reports have documented deaths up to 8 days after a serious whiplash injury. But one case published in 1995 by the American Heart Association examined the death of a man which happened nearly 2 months after he was injured in a rear-end collision.[stroke.ahajournals.org]
The 50 year-old taxi driver and victim of a rear-end collision complained of headaches and experienced incidents of visual instabilities. Approximately 2 months after the accident, he was found unconscious in his cab and was admitted to the hospital. The initial CT scan was normal but another scan performed a couple of days later revealed abnormalities. On the third day he passed away. An autopsy showed that whiplash was responsible for a lesion to his right vertebral artery which quickly led to an embolism at the base of his skull.
The mechanics of a whiplash injury.
A forward flexion of the neck followed by an immediate swing backward describes what doctors and lawyers call whiplash. Whiplash injuries resulting from rear-end auto accidents can cause injuries to the cervical spine producing severe headaches and a stiff neck. If you or a family member has been rear-ended by another vehicle, no matter how minor the accident seems at the time, you should be followed up by a physician as soon as possible. And because an accident attorney knows that some injuries can bear a delayed manifestation, it is wise to seek legal advice.
Experienced injury lawyers understand the seriousness of whiplash injuries
Whiplash injuries are more serious than many acknowledge. Attorney, Charlie Ward, is experienced in personal injury accidents involving whiplash and would be happy to consult with you about your auto, motorcycle or trucking accident. Call him at 317-639-9501 today for a free consultation.